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Blogging about college football by an Oklahoma Sooners fan.

The Case for Utah

With Penn State's loss on Saturday, the road to the BCS championship looks increasingly likely to go through the Big XII and SEC. If Texas Tech and Alabama win out, that will be the matchup. Otherwise, it's probably going to be the winners of this year's two power conferences.

Aren't we forgetting someone? The Utah Utes currently sit at 10-0, with very winnable games against San Diego State and BYU remaining. Yet, Utah currently is ranked seventh in the BCS standings, making the Utes an unlikely championship game participant.
Let's say either Alabama or Texas Tech loses one of their remaining regular season games. What makes Utah a better candidate than a one-loss team from a major conference? Well, for one, the Utes haven't lost. That would seem pretty important.
On top of that, it's not like Utah has played a bunch of cupcakes, despite the fact the Utes don't hail from a name-brand conference. The Sagarin ratings have the Mountain West Conference ranked seventh just below the power conferences. The MWC is right on the heels of the Pac-10, which the Mountain West teams ran roughshod over in head-to-head games this season.
When it comes to non-conference games, Utah lined up a slate including Michigan and Oregon State. You can't blame Kyle Willingham's team for the Wolverines' struggles this year, and beating the Beavers is more than USC can say this year. Overall, Sagarin rates Utah's strength of schedule 59th in the country, comparable to Alabama, Oklahoma State and Penn State.
Utah certainly presents a strong body of work. As much as it pains me to say it, the Utes probably should get a shot over a one-loss BCS team.
Blatant Homerism Power Poll Week Eleven
1. Texas Tech
2. Alabama
3. Utah
4. Texas
5. Oklahoma
6. USC
7. Florida
8. Boise State
9. Penn State
10. Oklahoma State